The kykNET Silwerskermfees (2013) was the perfect networking platform for film-makers in the Afrikaans market. Actors, directors, producers and all the role-players gathered recently in Cape Town to celebrate and honour their growing industry.

Karen Meiring, kykNET channel head, said: “We wanted to create a platform for everyone working in the medium.”

Part of the proceedings is a festival of new short and full-length movies, which are also competing for prizes. The short films have become a special project for kykNET. Not only are the young film-makers mentored through the process but, once the films are screened, they have discussion groups with experienced directors and scriptwriters, who help with guidance and advice.

“We want to nurture a culture of sharing,” says Meiring who, as one of the strongest role-players, knows the financial restraints for young film-makers. Meiring believes that the way forward is to encourage and engage with people who are passionate and determined to make movies. She says these people are determined to investigate as many channels as possible and, in today’s rapidly changing digital landscape, the opportunities are growing, with options such as cellphones and television becoming more attractive.

Those who have seen the short films of the past two years have been encouraged by the growth in the production and creativity values, and it is hoped that these young artists will benefit not only themselves but the local film industry.

For Meiring there is also a bigger picture emerging. She is interested in looking at a content conference and investigating the effect the entertainment genres have on one another. The film and book worlds are changing rapidly, and this is probably where new links will be established.

With Faan se Trein (based on a Pieter Fourie play) reaping almost all the rewards, Meiring realises that theatre has much to offer, and that opens up different avenues again. “There should be a second and third screen (stage) for most productions.”

While standing strong with its mentorship programme, kykNET doesn’t want to be prescriptive. “We want to bring experience and inexperience together to interact.”

kykNET Silwerskermfees 2013 winners:

Best Short Film: Toevlug

Best Actor Short Film: Pietie Beyers (Beskermhere)

Best Actress Short Film: Jana Strydom (Vashou–ding)

Short Film Best Direction: Christiaan Olwagen (Toevlug)

Short Film Best Text: Christiaan Olwagen and Martelize Kolver (Toevlug)

Short Film Special Mention: Albert Snyman and Louis Pretorius (Bloedson )

Full-length movies

Best Script: Pieter Fourie and Koos Roets (Faan se Trein)

Best Cinematography: Amelia Henning (Faan se Trein)

Best Editing: Nico Costaras (Faan se Trein)

Best Sound Design: Barry Donnely (Faan se Trein)

Best Actor: Willie Esterhuizen (Faan se Trein)

Best Actress: Lizelle de Klerk (Musiek vir die Agtergrond)

Best Director: Koos Roets (Faan se Trein)

Best Supporting Male: Deon Lotz (Faan se Trein)

Best Supporting Female: Anel Alexander (Faan se Trein)

Special Mention for Original Music: John-Henry Opperman (Musiek vir die Agtergrond)

• All the titles at the festival will be screened on the following dates:

Bakgat 3 (opens today)

Molly & Wors (September 27) Musiek vir die Agtergrond |(October 11)

Die Ballade van Robbie de Wee (October 25)

Faan se Trein (January 24)

• The six top movies of last year’s short film entries will also be screened at this year’s Aardklop festival in Potchefstroon in the last week of September.